The new year is a time for reflection and turning over a new leaf - to let go of the past, create goals for the future and set intentions for the present. Those who succeed in longer term goals know why they are achieving their goals is important to them on a deeper level.
Here 6 tips for a successful New Year’s Resolution in the new decade.
1.Find your ‘Why?
Psychologists have studied health behaviour change in tens of thousands of people and have found that those who succeed in the long-term pass what they call the ‘Threshold of Autonomy’ - where they discover why achieving their goals is important to them at a deeper level.
2. Scaffold your goals
The biggest contributor to successful long-term behaviour change is self-efficacy - the belief that what I’m doing is making a difference. This means that your brain needs regular feedback. I’ve found that the best way to do facilitate this is to break long-term goals down to smaller chunks.
3. Motivation follows action
Once you have your waypoints worked out, you write down a list of behaviours (rituals) on a board and put the board somewhere where you will see it lots of times a day. This is called your Ritual Board and it’s central to your success. On this board you put some hard rituals, but also lots of easy rituals so that you can complete one every time you see your board and tick it off.
4. JFT (Just for Today)
Every morning, you get up, look at yourself in the mirror and say “Just For Today" (JFT). “Just for today, I’m not going to smoke (or drink alcohol or eat crap food) or I will do a workout or eat healthy food.
5.Do a weekly audit
Every Sunday, do a self-reflection exercise. Give yourself a score out of 10 and reflect on what was good and what was not so good. Then give yourself a target score for next week
Many research studies have shown that when people get an accountability partner -someone who is along the journey with you, or on the sidelines to keep you accountable - they are much more successful at achieving their goals.
Edited article from Paul Taylor, Neuroscientist and Exercise Physiologist
Daniella Goldberg has a love of yoga and a passion for mindful meditation. Through her Hatha-Flow classes, she gently guides her students to grow strong, be flexible, focused and mindful, on and off the mat.